In my opinion, the entire first paragraph of a story or article should be strong.
I mostly write articles about social, economic and political issues. And each time I write one of them, I open with a paragraph that fully explains either the point I am making in the article, the question I am posing, or the opinion I am sharing.
For example, if I wrote an article about the problems that exists in poor inner-city communities, I would open with something like the following:
Many, if not most, of America's poor inner-city communities are in trouble, more than ever before. They are plagued by such problems as astronomical rates of violent crime, large and growing numbers of illegitimate births and sky-high levels of unemployment. In addition, a considerable number of those areas are so filthy and rundown they resemble the battle-torn cities of World War II Europe.
Then, I would go on to state my case.